Designer, Furnishing Guru and Mother
By Shorouk Abbas
When Shaden Abdel Hak is not busy in her showroom Art of Form, with iconic –brand furniture and accessories, she is often busy helping to create covetable interiors for some of the most design-savvy residents of Cairo. How, we wondered, has she managed to be such a dedicated mother, with her young family already quickly on course for successful careers of their own? Cairo West Magazine captured a few moments of her time to learn more.
CWM: Shaden, what are the biggest challenges of following a career and raising children?
SA: The biggest challenge is being able to manage, address and distinguish clearly between work and your children’s priorities. Many times this is not easy at all.
What are the 3 most important things a working mother should always make time for?
Illness, exams, attentive listening whenever needed, and most importantly, a long warm hug every now and then!
How do you keep a family close when everyone has a busy schedule?
The best recipe for closeness is a dedicated time for the whole family to be together at least once a week, even if it is around the table for lunch or dinner. Traveling on a trip all together whenever possible is magic as well.
What was your dream job as a kid and why?
My dream job was to become a lawyer! I have always had a persuasive argument!
What woman inspires you and why?
Margaret Thatcher, because of her will and strong conviction. She was very clear about what she wanted and believed in and didn’t allow anyone to interfere with that.
What are the best and worst decisions you’ve ever made?
The best decisions I have ever made were completely changing my career path, twice as a matter of fact, when my job had lost its challenging quality and become just a tiring, draining routine. I’m grateful that I had this luxury then. My worst decision is very personal, but I learned anyways never to regret a decision I took myself.
What parenting advice would you give?
Listen carefully and attentively to your kids. Never judge them by your own standards. Rather judge them by who they are. Accept and acknowledge their weaknesses before their strengths and learn how to be their role model.
What is your favorite app?